Saturday, November 9, 2019

2019 #DTA: #VWEDU DTA can guide ideation sessions. Group ideation: "Brainstorming"


DTA can guide ideation sessions.
Group ideation:  "Brainstorming"

Suggestions for how a  Digital Teaching Assistant (DTA) could support group brainstorming.  The DTA could not match a live moderator,  But it could do many of the things a human moderator would do with someone telling it when to do these things.
ACRL Virtual World interest group
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Rules for brainstorming

  • Judgement-free zone
  • Quantity over quality
  • Evaluation comes later
  • Stick to the task
  • The task is to develop ideas about how to...
  • (That line should be completed with a specific goal.)
  • When you run out of ideas, try organizing the list of ideas.
  • "Ideas that fit together sit together"
  • "If we are out of ideas now, maybe we should suspend and sleep on it."
  • -
  • Simple rules, easily forgotten.
  • Somebody says "Well, that won't work because..."
  • And the group starts talking about whether that won't work and why.
  • People start checking their ideas to be sure they can show why the idea will work.
  • Instead of thinking of ideas, the group shifts to thinking about what what won't work.
  • The group needs a moderator to interrupt: 
  • "Save evaluation till later.  We are looking for ideas now.

  • Brainstorm calls on the people to unleash their minds.
  • The unleashed mind tends to wander off on distractions.
  • And the group discussion may follow.
  • The group needs a moderator to call the group back to the topic.  

  • The flow of ideas will stop after a while. 
  • People will think they have run out of ideas.
  • The group needs a moderator to suggest alternative viewpoints.
  • Make a list of the ideas that are: Easy and obvious.
  • Or Hard but possible. 
  • Or Looks impossible to me.
  • Gather ideas that seem to fit together into their pwn lists.
  • "Ideas that fit together sit together"
  • Make a list of the key words.
  • Find the synonyms for the key words, add those to the list.

What can the DTA do about the rules?

  • Assuming the DTA is not as smart as a human moderator, it needs human help.
  • In a virtual world, it has the advantage of running the environment.

  • Rules are on wall signs.
  • All wall signs have animation "acts."
  • Anyone in the place can click on a sign to start its act.
  • The act will start with some big movement to get attention.
  • The move might be to the center of the group circle. 
  • The act includes dramatic sounds and a voice reciting the slogan. 
  • The instructions to the group:  
  • "If you notice that the group is not on task, click a sign that suggests what they need to do."
  • The signs would not tell who clicked, so shy people would not feel inhibited.
  • The signs could keep a record of who clicked them for the teacher to review.
  • Initially, the teacher might want to observe and provide clicks when needed.
  • With a little experience, group members would probably take over. 

DTA manages idea collection

  • DTA gives each person a panel for entering ideas
  • DTA displays each idea on a large screen, creating additional screens as needed.
  • (Virtual worlds can display a vast number of such screens.)
  • The initial display is in order of entry, without identity of the originator.
  • The individual panels remain available to the originator and the teacher.
  • The individual panels allow the user to make alternative lists.
  • Alternative lists require user-given names and are displayed near the originator.
  • (Multiple alternative lists are displayed near the originator by rising vertically.)
  • Teacher can follow group progress and individual progress/contributions.

DTA works 24/7

  • Participants can add ideas whenever they think of them.
  • They can also review previous whenever the want.
  • They can also have sessions with selected others any time they want.
  • Teacher always has a record of time-on-task.  
  • That record may be useful to advise students who need help.

DTA can provide suggestions


Can you brainstorm by yourself?

  • Yes, when you are ready.  
  • If you are ready, you know the answer to that question.
  • You get ready by practice.  Group brainstorming is good practice.
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